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Health Center South breaks ground on $25M expansion
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Health Center South breaks ground on $25M expansion

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Health Center South expansion

Officials from Health Center South along with local dignitaries and contractors break ground on the new Health Center South Medical Office Complex on Wednesday morning.

Health Center South broke ground Wednesday on a new office building that will provide high-tech health care options for doctors and patients and may also generate more than 200 new jobs.

The 200,000 square foot facility will cost $25 million and contractors will finish work on the building in summer 2018. Blondheim + Mixon, Inc. is the architect. Saliba Construction Company, Inc. is the contractor.

“We are thrilled to break ground today on this technologically-advanced building and doing our part to elevate Dothan’s medical landscape for patients and physicians alike,” Dr. Sebstian Heersink, managing partner in Health Center Development, LCC, said.

Jill Williams, director of marketing, said the five-story facility will include covered parking, complimentary Tesla/electric vehicle charging for lessees, over 890 parking spaces, four elevators, four floors with 29- to 36,000 square feet of medical class-A leasable space, several two-story lobbies and convenient next door access to Surgery Center South.

Medical class-A space refers to the highest quality leasable medical space, with high quality standard finishes, state of the art systems, exceptional accessibility and a definite market presence, Williams said.

Williams said a major draw for physicians who may wish to lease office space in the new office facility will be its access to high speed Internet. Offices at the center will have access to 100 Gigabytes per second in both upload and download speeds.

Consistent availability of super fast and reliable upload and download speeds are crucial to medical practices today. The secure and fast online transfer of high resolution MRIs, X-rays, scans and other medical records are not just the way of the future but already here,” she said.

As a point of comparison, the facility’s average upload and download speeds are 3,000 and 10,000 times faster than the average American’s upload and download speeds at home.

“Connectivity this fast opens up all kinds of medical applications and possibilities, like real-time virtual medical conferencing and telemedicine, off-site robotic surgeries, and advanced imaging transfer with instantaneous cloud backup,” Williams said.

Williams said the new facility could help Dothan recruit more physicians and offer better health care options.

“Investing in an innovative health care campus with access to an outpatient surgery center will strengthen our community's health care delivery network and help recruit new physicians and staff,” she said. “Our ultimate goal is to improve the experience for current employees and patients throughout the Wiregrass by providing high quality and cost effective health care.”

Williams said it’s tough to estimate how many physicians could end up working at the new facility, as every practice has different space needs. Williams said that up to 250 people could end up being employed at the facility, however.

Health Center South began as an ophthalmology practice in downtown Dothan in the 1980s. Eye Center South moved into its current location in 1982. Over the next three decades, other practices partnered with Eye Center South, and the Health Center South complex was developed.

The medical campus will soon offer another access point from Ross Clark Circle. Williams said a separate vehicle, pedestrian, golf cart and bicycle bridge is currently being constructed on the north side of the seven-acre lot, offering additional access for patients, their families, staff, visitors and service personnel.

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